January 17, 2005


Harry a Nazi? You're having a laugh (Mark Steyn, 18/01/2005, Daily Telegraph)

The French sports minister suggested the "scandal" would undermine Britain's bid to host the Olympics. Londoners should be so lucky.

But, if I understand the concern of the sporting world correctly, being a totalitarian state that's killed millions is no obstacle to hosting the Olympics, but going to a costume party wearing the uniform of a defunct totalitarian state that's no longer around to kill millions is completely unacceptable. [...]

One reason why the English-speaking democracies were just about the only advanced nations not to fall for Nazism or Fascism is that they simply found it too ridiculous. Bertie Wooster's famous riposte to the Mosleyesque Sir Roderick Spode could speak for the entire anglosphere: "The trouble with you, Spode, is that just because you have succeeded in inducing a handful of half-wits to disfigure the London scene by going about in black shorts, you think you're someone. You hear them shouting, 'Heil, Spode!' and you imagine it is the Voice of the People.

"That is where you make your bloomer. What the Voice of the People is saying is: 'Look at that frightful ass Spode swanking about in footer bags! Did you ever in your puff see such a perfect perisher?'" That's why British party stores stock Nazi outfits - because they're a joke, and we made them one.

It's not as if you can dress up as a great French general of WWII.

Posted by Orrin Judd at January 17, 2005 11:04 PM

I would guess that in this country there are more high school teams named after the Amish or Quakers than there are named after the French. Somewhere there just has to be a "Fightin' Quakers" taking the court this weekend.

Posted by: Raoul Ortega at January 18, 2005 12:49 AM

Perhaps Harry is counting on the success, in 2008, of ..... John Forbes Kerry.

It's unfortunate but not unexpected that six months ago the press did not identify the parallels between John Kerry and Marshall Petain. Naturally Petain was found guilty of war crimes; also unsurprisingly, his execution was commuted by Charles de Gaulle.

Posted by: LarryH at January 18, 2005 7:32 AM

People don't dress up as French military because they just don't have de gaulle.

Posted by: Randall Voth at January 18, 2005 8:58 AM

Nobody has ever had a sexual fantasy about being ravished by someone dressed as a French General.

Posted by: Brandon at January 18, 2005 12:36 PM

In a world where Elton John still breathes I wouldn't be so sure about that.

Posted by: joe shropshire at January 18, 2005 1:29 PM

de Lattre

Posted by: Harry Eagar at January 18, 2005 3:46 PM

Fair enough.

Posted by: joe shropshire at January 18, 2005 7:17 PM